PERRY -- As the sun started setting on the fairgrounds, more and more visitors entered the gates of the 23rd annual Georgia National Fair on Thursday for Sneak-a-Peek day, signaling the start of the 11-day event.
The rides are ready to go, said Randy Moore, executive director at the Georgia National Fairgrounds and Agricenter.
Some came for pay-one-price armband night, some for the food and some to make sure their livestock were show-ready.
During the opening ceremony, Gov. Nathan Deal talked about walking around the barns. His father was an agriculture teacher, and he grew up showing cows and hogs.
He recognized the hard work and responsibility that is learned from tending to the animals.
If anything can restore confidence in our country, those young people will, Deal said about the students who will show their livestock throughout the course of the fair.
On the other end of the fair where less mooing was taking place, the cries of game hawkers and the screams of riders could be heard along the midway.
Youngster Lucas Anderson, of Perry, and his grandmother Sandy Cravey, of Hawkinsville, have been coming to the fair for many years.
The fair is awesome, Lucas said.
His favorite ride is the Starship, which spins while riders lean against panels.
I like when you get stuck to the walls, he said.
His grandmother, whose favorite part is the food, especially the turkey legs, said they will likely be back at least three or four more times before the fair ends Oct. 14.
Opening day was for the rides. The next few visits would be spent looking at the vendors and browsing the buildings.
You cant see it all in one trip, Cravey said.